Thoughts on Modes

Hi all, I actually was just trying this step-by-step process I put together out on a fresh Hub and noticed an issue. The issue is that instead of changing the three existing Modes to match one of the four I have specified, you need to actually delete each them and “Add New Mode”. I was running into an issue where the Hello, Home actions I created to transition between the Modes weren’t working. It would give a message saying “I was not able to change the mode to Home Night as you requested because it is not one of the modes defined for this location.” I solved the issue by deleting all of the Modes I created/updated and just re-added each (Home Day, Home Night, Away Day, Away Night).

Anyways, let me know of any questions.

How is this routine different than Tim’s Magic Home app? Thanks.

Check out my Magic Home app. Does this completely automagically. No tricky 30 step process.

Submitted this to STs for official support as well:)


^^^^^ THIS! Tim did an awesome job with this app, and it works perfectly!

Thanks for the clarification. Tim, appreciate you making updates to the program. Works great.

@tslagle13 Oh wow, very cool! Totally missed this on the forum. So little time to look around for these things.

Anyways, I just tried it out and I have a question: It looks like the app is designed to switch between the modes only when someone comes home or everyone leaves, then it checks whether it’s day/night to determine which phrase to run. If that’s the case, then does it not switch between day and night modes automatically while already in Home or Away modes? In other words, will it automatically switch from Home Day mode to Home Night mode when sunset occurs (and visa versa) or Away Day to Away Night when sunset occurs (and visa versa)?

It does switch automagically in this case :smile:

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And it was mentioned in a separate topic… some of us have certain lights that stay on when we are home @ sunset. Generally, the house gets dark about 30-45 minutes before sunset, so you might want the lights to come on sooner. You can configure your specific home @ sunset phrase to automatically run XX number of minutes before sunset, but you will also need to tell it to NOT perform the action if you are in any sort of away mode.

Tim, I am so going to bother you one of these days setting up your magic! Haven’t set it up as yet! :wink:

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I just started using it and haven’t had any problems.

Well, none that aren’t my own fault at least… :slight_smile:

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@tslagle13 Very cool! I’ll try it out tonight. Is there any chance this SmartApp will be available through the SmartThings SmartSetup? I’m a homebuilder and we include SmartThings with our homes so it would be ideal for our customers if they didn’t have to worry about creating an account on and making the SmartApp by copying/pasting code as it’s probably too complicated for most.


I just loaded Tim’s Magic Home App.
I deleted my old Modes and Hello Home Actions.
I’m now using 4 Modes: Home Day, Home Night, Away Day, Away Night.
and 4 Hello Home Actions by the same name: Home Day, Home Night, Away Day, Away Night.

My question is setting up the Hello Home Actions (Hello Home, Gear Symbol):

Under "Automatically Perform _____Mode when:"
Everyone Leaves- I have Away Day & Away Night
Someone Arrives- I have Home Day & Home Night

When asked "Don’t Automatically do this if I am in one of these Modes is it best to put:
For Action:
Away Day- “Do not do when in” Away Night, Home Night, Away Day modes
Away Night- “Do not do when in” Away Day, Home Day, Away Night modes
Home Day- “Do not do when in” Away Night, Home Night, Home Day modes
Home Night- "Do not do when in"Away Day, Home Day, Home Night modes

Is this necessary or will the Magic Home App take care of this step?
If I should enter these “Do not do when in” modes, does it make any difference if I enter the Mode that’s named the same as that Action? ie list Away Day mode under “Do not do when” for the Away Day Action…

Confused yet… :smile:


No need to do this. Magic Home will take care of it for you :smile:


I have submitted it for official support.

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Made a dedicated thread for me app here:

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@themightypope , have you made any headway on this?

It sounds like the best, most flexible solution short of SmartThings doing it native.

This would basically be an environment device that we’d include in every bit of code we write to store a list of global state variables, right? Sounds perfect.

Brandon, I see you have been using Tim’s Magic Home SmartApp. How does it compare to your 20-30min setup method?

Magic Home works great for me except for when my phone presence leaves and returns in the middle of the night. That’s the only time I’m in a Mode that is not automatically activated by magic home (Home Sleep).

At Sunset, I have Magic Home change my mode to Home Night.
At 10:30pm, I have ST change mode to Home Sleep until Sunrise when Magic Home changes it to Home Day.

Just after 11pm the last three nights my phone briefly left and returned causing the mode to change from Home Sleep to Home Night unwanted. **Magic Home does not have a "do not perform this mode (Home Night) if in these modes (Home Sleep), like your old long hand method does.

It’s not the phone leaving (I don’t get an unwanted Away Night) it’s the phone returning (Home Night) that is messing this up. The false alarm threshold of Magic Home is preventing the unwanted Away Night but does not work when the phone returns (Home Night).

If you did not have any problems with your long hand method, I may go to that since the “do not perform this mode when …” option is available.

I increased the ST presence circle around my house three times already and do not want to increase it anymore in an attempt to prevent this issue.

@Dave, good question. The first thing I should say is that we actually use the SmartSense Presence Sensors rather than our phones (for the sake of phone battery life). Also, I have an alert setup for whenever my fiance arrives/leaves home (not to spy on her, but to trigger a specific Tasker task on my phone). There have only been one or two instances where I remember receiving false notifications that she left/arrived home during the past 6 months or more that I’ve had the alert setup.

Secondly, I don’t use any other modes than the 4 main modes we’ve talked about. That said, I’m not sure I’ve ever really experienced the issue you’re describing. It does sound like using the “Don’t automatically perform this action when…” functionality could solve your problem, but I’m not sure if @tslagle13 plans to add this into his app. Tim?

It’s already there.

I think i was mis understanding this whole time…

just use my restriciton that’s built into the magic home app. you’ll be good.